This poem was originally published in Marrow - a collection of poetry and prose by Sutra.

I once had an idea that shone over a city
but then fear came
with the body of the whole sky
and swallowed it.

This is a thing that fear knows how to do

wide mouth
and ten stomachs
always grasping


But today
I said No.
— Sutra

About Sutra

Sutra is a Ghanaian-British voice of power, whose creative work is centred on an ethos of community, vulnerability and healing. From an early age, Sutra has been passionate about the art of storytelling as an act of individual and collective resistance. Sutra released her first body of work as a musician and a writer in 2015.

Entitled 'The Art of Being,' the mixtape was released on Soundcloud to rave reviews, and picked up a day later by BBC Wales. Its lead track, Where You Are, was played on the Adam Walton Show. In March 2017, Sutra collaborated with other creatives to co-direct and release her first music film, Waves/The Water, which has since been screened in London, Tokyo, and Yaoundé.


Image: Sutra.

This poem was originally published in Marrow - a collection of poetry and prose by Sutra in 2018, and shared with the permission of the author. All rights of the author reserved.


Self Portrait

A handwritten, unpublished poem by acclaimed South African poet and author Bessie Head, published by Rhodes University in 1996. This poem, dated July 1961, is one of Head's early and unedited work.

And, low down,
Indifferent earth worm;
Plunging, leaping,
Flickering, wavering,
Stammering, hesitating,
Bold, reckless, impatient;
Static, placid,
Of no certain direction,
Of certain direction;
Isolated, like driftwood
On the tossing, heaving ocean -
Flung to the top of a high-sounding,
Dazzling wave,
Engulfed in the anonymous depths;
Oh contradiction!
THAT is I.

Image: Alan Coulson.

This poem was originally published by Rhodes University in 1996. All rights of the publisher reserved.